This girl I knew in high school appears to have gotten divorced. I say "appears" because I haven't actually been in touch with her for years, but she just took her Facebook "married to" status down so her relationship status isn't listed at all anymore, and changed her name back to her maiden name. So it seems pretty clear. This is after months of cryptic posts about how she will get through the tough times, and she's so glad her friends are there to support her, and so on. Also someone posted on her wall once about how she would get through this, and the first TEN YEARS (!!) of a marriage are the hardest. I don't know, maybe I'm young and naive, but a 10-year rough patch at the start of a marriage sounds like a pretty freaking long rough patch. I mean, even if you stay married for 50 years, that's a good 20% of your marriage right there. My goodness.
ANYWAY, my initial point with this had nothing to do with her divorce, really. It has to do with the fact that her Facebook profile had a customized URL, and it was her married name. You know, facebook.com/firstname.marriedname. And now she is Firstname Maidenname again, but the URL of her Facebook profile still has her married name. And I remember when Facebook first started offering customized URLs, they gave a strict warning about how you had to choose carefully because once the URL is assigned it can't be changed, but dude, do you think they could make an exception for divorced people? Because how much does it suck to go through a divorce, drop your married name, and still have it staring you and all your friends in the face every time you log onto Facebook? I'm just saying.
Also, this is one of the first divorces I've witnessed via Facebook. AND, another friend has just changed his Facebook status from "married" to "separated." I didn't even know that "separated" was an OPTION for a Facebook relationship status. But apparently it is. I wonder if it's been added recently? Due to popular demand?
I was in college when Facebook was launched, so I grew up with it, so to speak, since at first it was targeted only to college students, and that's what I was at the time. As I've gotten older I've watched my friends' relationship statuses change from joke marriages to their close friends to "it's complicated" to "in a relationship" to "engaged" to "married." And I guess now I'm entering the time in my life when some of those marriages start to fall apart, and so I should reasonably expect to see more and more people listing their relationship status as "separated" or "divorced."
But STILL. It doesn't get any easier to watch, even with people you barely know. My sister went through a divorce, and that is obviously the divorce that has affected me personally the most, and, you know, it wasn't MY divorce so I was mostly there as her support system, and now she's remarried and pregnant (did I mention she is having a girl? By the way? Because she is, and, you know, YAY, and also how convenient for my parents that they get a matched set of boy-girl grandchildren arriving approximately six weeks apart, no?), and everything seems to have worked out quite beautifully for her, so that's great, but it still doesn't mean I'm less traumatized when other people get divorced. Or separated. Even if it's people I haven't spoken to in years. Even if it's people whose spouses I never met. Even if it's people whose lives I didn't think I was the least bit invested in.
I guess I just want EVERY marriage to work. And I blithely assume that they all will. My own marriage is so lovely and I want to assume that every other married couple has an equally lovely relationship of their own. And so I DO assume it, and then suddenly some of them are divorced and that means they didn't have the marriage I wanted them to have, or they did and then something changed, and either way: SAD.
And don't even get me STARTED on blog divorces. Whenever somebody in blogland announces that they're getting divorced, it hits me over the head like a sledgehammer. I'm never expecting it, NEVER, even if the person has been writing for ages about how their marriage is struggling.
Call me naive, but I'm not really looking forward to the continued disillusions about other people's marriages that are sure to keep coming in the next few years. So I think I'll keep on assuming and hoping that everyone I know has a great, happy marriage that will last for the rest of their lives. Even if that means I have to be shocked and upset on occasion when I find out news to the contrary.
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